Maplewood History: A Hunk, A Hunk of Burning…Hobby? Revisited


January is already two thirds over.  I have a couple of ideas for upcoming blog posts but the circumstances of everyday living keep getting in the way of working on them.  Fortunately, fellow Maplewood history aficionado Luke Havel mentioned in an email that he occasionally sees matchbook covers from businesses now long gone that once thrived (or didn’t) in our fair town available on eBay.

Wonderful!  I had been planning a rerun of my earlier post on just that particular bit of ephemera.  This was a fun post to make.  I hope those who remember it will enjoy seeing it again.  If this is your first viewing, consider how much history of our community is contained in these small cardboard squares of which the overwhelming majority of have been discarded.


Luke, thank you for reminding me of this.  In the future if any of those covers from Ed’s Tavern show up, you might want to give me a buzz.

Doug Houser          January 19, 2023

Gene Kitson, collector extraordinaire, in 2007.
This is a good example of the value of the covers. This is the only image that I have ever found of the Tulip Box Restaurant that was once on the SE corner of Big Bend and Greenwood.
One of the aforementioned covers from Ed’s Tavern.



  1. This came by email from Will Holmes: I enjoy when you recall a former post as I wasn’t there for the first time and it is all new to me. I grew up with a grandfather and father (W.R. Holmes, son of Sarah Harrison) who both smoked. We always had matchbooks around, but even at my advanced age, these probably pre-date the ones I grew up with.
    They are a great glimpse into that era. Interesting that the use of pinup girl images found their way onto cover for cleaners and markets. Of course, bars and mechanic related businesses have appropriated those forever, but finding them in these other contexts is kind of a hoot. Yes, it was the objectification of women, and probably baseline misogynistic, but may not have seemed so much at the time.

    • I have to agree with you, Will. I’m from the same era that you are. I was born in 1949. The images of the pinup girls seem pretty innocent to me but some folks would rightfully be offended by them today. Thanks for your ruminations on these interesting and mostly overlooked small cardboard fragments from our past.

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